Skip to main content

Joint Task Force 3 Presents Operation GREENHOUSE


Published 1951


Operation GREENHOUSE was conducted in April and May of 1951. This test series consisted of four weapons related test shots from the 300-foot level on towers on the Enewetak Atoll Pacific Ocean, two of which greatly aided the pursuit of a hydrogen, or thermonuclear device.

Carried out by the Atomic Energy Commission, the shots were:

Dog, April 7, 81 kilotons
Easy, April 20, 47 kilotons
George, May 8, 225 kilotons
Item, May 24, 45.5 kilotons

The George experiment proved an H-bomb was possible and led to a crash development program of the Teller-Ulam design. George was not a weapon, but only a device to test thermofusion capabilities of hydrogen isotopes.

Item was the first test of the boosting principle, which involved increasing the yield of a weapon by as much as two times for the same amount of fissionable material.

Among the narrators of this top secret film (in original form) were:

Carey Wilson

Lieutenant General Elwood Quesada, United States Air Force (USAF), Supreme Commander of Joint Task Force 3.

Reed Hadley

Ray Walston

There were disturbing results in archiving these extremely historic events in color, related directly to the properties and instabilities of Kodachrome I film of the time. The pigments of these color films reacted with the lacquer coating meant to protect the films in common storage conditions, causing very disappointing fading of blue dye, as well as changes in other dye components in these films. Careful, cool storage conditions in top secret vaults would have prevented much of this film quality destruction, and especially if the problem were discovered before the early 1970s, when Kodachrome I films were discovered to experience such destruction.

The blurriness of Kodachrome I films was attributed to the immense grain of very slow 16 mm ISO 10 color film, as well as the bleeding of dyes in the celluloid. These films were so slow that night scenes had to be simulated using blue filters in daylight. Blue dyes were the least sensitive to light in this stock, and therefore simulated darkness using blue filters. Notice in 1950s cowboy films that night scenes contained long shadows and bright highlights from sunshine, due to this technique of low light simulation required by Kodachrome I.

Periods of silence during this film were strictly intended. This film was carefully sanitized by nuclear weapons experts and Department of Defense officials to remove secret information.

Observers of this film cannot reasonably demand more in quality for this film, and the public is fortunate just to be able to see these films. This film release was not designed to present this film without flaws due to aging and the notorious instability of its original Kodachrome I color film stock. This secret film has been sanitized, with secret portions removed, after the complete version was locked away for decades in top secret vaults, where the unsanitized version remains to this day. The celluloid version of these films are increasingly brittle and very few people have security clearances to view the unedited versions that contain jealously guarded secrets to this day.

Related sites:

http://www.archive.org/details/ExerciseDesertRock1951

http://www.archive.org/details/OperationGreenhouse1951

http://www.archive.org/details/MilitaryParticipationonBUSTERJANGLE1951

http://www.archive.org/details/TumblerSnapper1952

http://www.archive.org/details/OperationIVY1952

http://www.archive.org/details/The280mmGunattheNevadaProvingGround1953

http://www.archive.org/details/CastleCommandersReport1954

http://www.archive.org/details/MilitaryEffectsStudiesonOperationCastle1954

http://www.archive.org/details/MilitaryEffectsonOperationRedwing1956

http://www.archive.org/details/OperationDOMINICNuclearTests1962


Run time 1 hour 19 minutes
Producer USAF Lookout Mountain Laboratory
Production Company USAF Lookout Mountain Laboratory, Hollywood, California
Audio/Visual mono, originated from soundtrack of 16 mm Kodachrome I film stocks, color
Language English
Contact Information For further questions and answers, please visit the Atomic Forum: http://www.atomicforum.org The purpose of the Atomic Forum is to objectively discuss, learn, and archive information related to nuclear weapons development, past and present.

Credits

The license holder of this film insists that any site (or individuals) linking or displaying through any Internet protocol to this film, to visibly, clearly and fully credit in text this site [http://www.atomicforum.org] on any pages linked or independently displaying this film, for providing this film: "Provided by the Atomic Forum http://www.atomicforum.org"

Reviews

Reviewer: reviewmonger - - February 28, 2009
Subject: Needs another FOIA review
Too much censorship...I think this video deserves another intelligence review just to make sure they aren't keeping too much from the public which is safe for release.
Reviewer: Kevin VandeWettering - - October 14, 2007
Subject: Not a valid license
Works created by the US Government are public domain. The claims of this "license holder" are invalid.
In Collection
Community Video
Uploaded by
GravitonUSA
on 7/4/2006
Views
3,414
Favorites
4
Reviews
2
PEOPLE ALSO FOUND
Community Video
by USAF Lookout Mountain Laboratory
3,413
4
2
( 2 reviews )
Community Video
by USAF Lookout Mountain Laboratory
25,579
5
2
( 2 reviews )
Community Video
by Lookout Mountain Laboratory
4,014
6
0
Community Video
by AEC and Joint Task Force 3
6,003
9
1
( 1 reviews )
Community Video
by Lookout Mountain Laboratory USAF
9,203
9
5
( 5 reviews )
Community Video
by United States Department of Defense
21,379
11
4
( 4 reviews )
Community Video
21,358
10
2
( 2 reviews )
Community Video
by AFSWP and Joint Task Force 7
8,579
10
2
( 2 reviews )
Short Format Films
35,448
8
2
( 2 reviews )
Short Format Films
by Lookout Mountain Laboratory USAF
6,359
6
0